Career Glance: medical assisting provides a quick route to allied health careers

02.23.2014 | By Rob Vanya

Within a month after earning a medical assisting certificate from San Jacinto College, Angelica Gomez found a job at a local clinic. Photo credit: Rob Vanya, San Jacinto College marketing, public relations, and government affairs department.


A one-year technical certificate in medical assisting from San Jacinto College can not only lead to a good job, it can also provide a quick route to various high demand allied health careers.

For Angelica Gomez, a one-year medical assisting certificate from San Jacinto College landed her a job as a medical assistant in just one month. After graduating from San Jacinto College in December, she was hired at a local industrial and family practice clinic. Following a short probation period, she will be eligible for a raise and will be making around $15 an hour. 

Gomez is pursuing an associate degree in general studies from San Jacinto College, and she plans to transfer to either Texas Woman’s University in Houston or Sam Houston State University, with a goal of earning a bachelor’s degree in nursing. Her ultimate goal is to transition from medical assisting to a career in nursing.

Gomez enjoys the opportunities she has as a medical assistant to learn many health care skills. “During clinicals I worked the front of the house and back of the house, so I learned how to take vitals, help room patients, give injections, draw blood, and assist with practically every type of procedure,” she commented.

Graduates of San Jacinto College’s medical assisting program earn a technical certificate in a three-semester format that includes internships. Medical assistants perform both administrative and clinical duties in hospitals, clinics, and doctors offices. Because they are versatile and perform a wide range of duties, demand is high for well-trained medical assistants.

“Since San Jacinto College launched the medical assisting program in 2002, we have experienced a near 100 percent completion rate, which means that basically all of our students are either hired by the time they graduate, or they continue to pursue higher education,” commented Diana Johnson, San Jacinto College medical assisting program director. “It is a great front door into health care because medical assistants can test drive various areas of the career field.”

According to the most recent statistics available from the American Association of Medical Assistants, the average wage for full-time workers who hold Certified Medical Assistant credentials is $14.94 per hour, or $29,460 a year.

San Jacinto College offers medical assisting courses and degree options at the North Campus, as well as medical assisting courses that are available online.


About San Jacinto College

Surrounded by monuments of history, industries and maritime enterprises of today, and the space age of tomorrow, San Jacinto College has been serving the citizens of East Harris County, Texas, for more than 50 years. The Achieving the Dream Leader College is committed to the goals and aspirations of a diverse population of 30,000 students in more than 200 degree and certificate options, including university transfer and career preparation. Students also benefit from the College’s job training programs, renowned for meeting the needs of growing industries in the region. San Jacinto College graduates contribute nearly $630 million each year to the Texas workforce. San Jacinto College. Your Goals. Your College. For more information about San Jacinto College, please call 281-998-6150, visit, or follow us on Facebook at